Chef Carla Hall, a contributor to America The Great Cookbook, o;ers this fresh take on turkey.
In a very large resealable plastic bag, combine the water, brown sugar, allspice,
cloves, peppercorns, star anise and ½ cup salt. Seal tightly and shake to dissolve
the salt and sugar. Add the turkey parts, seal tightly and place in a large bowl.
Refrigerate for at least 6 hours or up to overnight. Preheat the oven to 400 F.
Remove the turkey from the brine, rinse well and pat dry with paper towels.
Discard the brine. In a small bowl, combine the parsley, sage, garlic, lemon
zest, red pepper ;akes, ½ cup olive oil and 2 teaspoons salt. Carefully run your
hand between the turkey skin and meat to loosen the skin, then rub the pars-
ley mixture over the meat and under the skin. Cover and refrigerate for 3 hours.
Rub each piece of turkey with olive oil to lightly coat. Heat a heavy skillet over
medium-high heat. Lightly coat the bottom with olive oil. Working in batches,
sear the turkey parts until golden brown on all sides, about 3 minutes per side.
Transfer the browned pieces to a half sheet pan and arrange in a single layer.
Roast until a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of each piece
registers 170 F, about 45 minutes. Start checking the pieces after
40 minutes and transfer each piece from the pan to a platter
1 hour. Makes
as it’s cooked through. Smaller parts, like the
thighs, will be done earlier, and the
larger pieces, like
can take up to
Cooking with Love:
Comfort Food that Hugs
You (Atria Books, 2013).
Food styling: Jen Straus.
1 quart water
½ cup packed brown sugar
10 whole allspice berries
10 whole cloves
10 whole black peppercorns
5 whole star anise
½ cup plus 2 teaspoons
kosher salt, divided
11- to 15-pound turkey,
cut into 8 pieces
( 2 wings, 2 legs, 2 breasts,
1½ cups fresh ;at-leaf
¼ cup fresh sage leaves,
4 garlic cloves, minced
3 tablespoons freshly
grated lemon zest
1 tablespoon red
½ cup extra-virgin
olive oil plus more
IF IT’S traditional you’re after, try these
tips for the best bird on the block.
• To add flavor, combine room-temperature butter with herbs and
other seasonings to create the perfect
mixture to rub under and over the skin
before cooking. As the turkey roasts,
the butter melts into the flesh, keeping
the meat moist and creating a crisp,
•Keep it natural by garnishing the turkey
serving platter with sprigs of fresh herbs
such as rosemary, sage and thyme or
bay leaves; small pears, apples or citrus;
or wedges of pomegranate.
•If you will be using a fresh turkey, order
it several days in advance and pick it up
the day before Thanksgiving. If you plan
to use a frozen turkey, begin thawing
it in the refrigerator well before you’ll
need to cook it, allowing about four
hours per pound to thaw completely.
•If the skin begins to brown too quickly,
tent the turkey with aluminum foil.
•Keep the temperature consistent when
basting by removing the roasting pan
from the oven, closing the oven door
and basting on the stovetop. This will
help keep your oven at the desired
• When roasting a small turkey, turn the
bird twice during cooking to produce
evenly browned and crisp skin.
1 acorn squash (or other type of squash)
3 tablespoons sun;ower oil
1 teaspoon kosher salt
¼ cup pepitas (pumpkin seeds)
¼ cup maple syrup, warmed
Preheat the oven to 375 F.
Handful of fresh herbs for garnish (we used
nasturtium leaves; sage works wonderfully as well)
Leaving the skin on, halve the squash lengthwise,
discard the seeds and slice into half-moons. Place
the squash slices in a bowl, drizzle with the oil,
sprinkle with the salt and gently toss together.
Transfer to a roasting pan and roast until tender
and lightly caramelized, about 35 minutes.
In a small, dry frying pan, toast the pepitas over medium
heat, shaking the pan to prevent burning, until lightly
golden brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a chopping
board to cool, then crush lightly with a rolling pin.
Remove the squash from the oven and brush or drizzle
a little of the maple syrup over each piece. Place on
a serving platter, sprinkle with the crushed pepitas
and garnish with the herbs. Makes 4 to 6 servings.
Recipe from chef Sean Sherman, reprinted from America
The Great Cookbook ( Weldon Owen, 2017).
MAPLE;GLAZED ROASTED ACORN SQUASH WITH TOASTED PEPITAS
Of course, the diversity has increased
as America has grown. Just last year, The
New York Times collected stories about
Thanksgiving food from ;; families
across the country. They included Laotian
immigrants in Minneapolis who rub their
turkey with lemongrass and makrut lime
leaves; Iraqis who make a Kurdish casserole of vegetables and lamb in Nashville;
and descendants of Dutch immigrants
who layer potatoes with sour cream, cheddar and cream cheese. All those dishes are
every bit as important to those families’
traditions as cranberry sauce and mini
pecan pies are to mine.
More than any connection to the
Pilgrims, this diversity is what makes
Thanksgiving perhaps the most quintessentially American meal.
To celebrate it, we offer you a recipe
for a Norman Rockwell–worthy turkey
along with suggestions for something different. That way, this Thanksgiving you
can celebrate the true spirit of America,
in all its glorious variety. C
Joe Yonan is food and dining editor of
The Washington Post and editor of America
The Great Cookbook.